Media reaches for new euphemisms to report on spying on the Trump campaign

George Neumayr:
The media’s pooh-poohing coverage of Spygate grows more laughable by the day. Turn on CNN at almost any hour and you will see its farcical re-education camp in session — this or that host yelling louder and louder that no one “spied” on the Trump campaign.

As stupid as this coverage is, it is still worth dissecting, if only for its propagandistic shadings, telling omissions, and inadvertent revelations. It is as if the media has an emergency manual at the ready in the event that a story starts hurting the Democrats, a manual which enjoins reporters to run away from it as fast as they can. But if that’s not possible, if they have to shelter in place, they are instructed to minimize the story and urge the public to avert its gaze from it. If that still doesn’t work, they are to find useful idiots in the GOP to repeat these public warnings. If that fails and public interest persists, well, cover the story but pretend like you are not covering it — simultaneously say that “no spy” was sent to infiltrate the Trump campaign while dispatching reporters to England to polish the spy’s reputation to the extent possible.

That’s the tack taken by the Washington Post, which is now on at least its second major story about the spying by Stefan Halper that dare not speak its name. The reporters on this story must have worked up a sweat trying to find just the right euphemistic finesse for it. The headline on their piece is amusingly labored and indirect: “Cambridge University perch gave FBI source access to top intelligence figures — and a cover as he reached out to Trump associates”

A spy who infiltrated the Trump campaign using means of low deceit is thus turned into a “source” who “reached out” to it. By paragraph four, the Post tries out another euphemistic shading: Stefan Halper, who drew upon his Cambridge University credentials to con Carter Page and George Papadopoulos into meetings, was simply using that position to “assist the FBI in a secret operation — investigating Russia’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 White House race.” Catch that one? The “secret operation” wasn’t spying on the Trump campaign to catch it out in collusion with Russia; no, the secret operation was “investigating Russia’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 White House race.” Whenever the media needs to make spying on Trumpworld sound harmless, it shifts to that broader, Russia-centric emphasis. But it is nonsense. The “secret operation” was to obtain secrets on the Trump campaign. The “secret operation” wasn’t shadowing and entrapping Russians but Americans.
There is more.

The media and some in the FBI are laboring hard to downplay the attempted entrapment by the use of spies against select people in the Trump campaign.  The harder they try the more guilty they look.  In fact, the story looks ridiculous.


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